It’s been ages since I’ve heard anyone complain about being bored out of their minds because they have so much time on their hands (Where have all the cowboys gone? No seriously, where are they?).
Not that people are not bored anymore, they just have no time to wallow in it.
Good old common sense says that the better we manage our time the lesser amount of stress we will feel. Just knowing this is however not going to help if you do not adapt effective strategies of time management.
The first piece of advice I can give you is to have goals. This will help you focus your energy on relevant, productive activities instead of running around like a chicken with its head cut off.
Let’s see what the experts have to say…
To get started, choose one of these strategies, try it for two to four weeks and see if it helps. If it does, consider adding another one. If not, try a different one.
• Plan each day. Planning your day can help you accomplish more and feel more in control of your life. Write a to-do list, putting the most important tasks at the top. Keep a schedule of your daily activities to minimize conflicts and last-minute rushes.
• Prioritize your tasks. Time-consuming but relatively unimportant tasks can consume a lot of your day. Prioritizing tasks will ensure that you spend your time and energy on those that are truly important to you.
The trick to de-stressing is having a plan (duh).
Allow yourself 10 to 15 minutes, either at the end or start of each day for this task. Now the first couple of minutes just let your mind drift through what all you need done. Jot them down and prioritize.
List making really helps map out everything for you. Plus you won’t forget anything important.
Stay Organized: In addition to keeping an organized schedule, as mentioned above, it’s important to maintain an organized home. Most people don’t realize how much time and money are sucked up (not to mention stress created) by living in an environment where things are difficult to find and relaxation is a challenge…
To Thine Own Self Be True: Knowing yourself well can also help you to avoid getting overwhelmed. How? For one thing, by knowing your limitations, you avoid taking on too much. For example, if you know you’re not the best manager of people, you can avoid putting yourself in a position where you’ll be asked to do management-type tasks, saving yourself stress and the extra time and energy it would take to learn to do this better. Also, if you constantly put yourself in a position of taking on more than you can handle, take an honest look inward to help you figure out what’s behind this. That way, you can stop.
I know some people think being cluttered, disorganized is the mark of a creative mind but all it really does is block any sort of clear thinking. To be at the top of your game, you need to make sure your home and/or office environment is organized.
Another aspect of de-stressing is figuring out the scope of your abilities.
Did your mama tell you you’re a superstar?
We all love to think there’s nothing we can’t do and although it’s healthy to have a positive self-image, we should also strive to be realistic.
Know your limits so you do not get anxious and overwhelmed when juggling too many tasks you just don’t have the knack for.
Have a lunch break
Many people work through their lunch break to gain an extra hour at work, but Donaldson-Feilder says that can be counter-productive. “As a general rule, taking at least 30 minutes away from your desk will help you to be more effective in the afternoon,” she says.
A break is an opportunity to relax and think of something other than work. “Go for a walk outdoors or, better still, do some exercise,” says Donaldson-Feilder. “You’ll come back to your desk re-energised, with a new set of eyes and renewed focus.”
Planning your day with a midday break will also help you to break up your work into more manageable chunks.
Working long hours without proper nourishment or rest is a definite no no in my book. Firstly, because I’m a foody and secondly because I know a well-rested mind and body is more capable of dealing with stressors and delivering the goods.
• Build a support system of people that help you feel good
• Be assertive, support your own needs and interests
• Spend time with friends regularly ~ talking, “hanging out,” sharing feelings and concerns
• Take time for fun, doing activities that are enjoyable and good for you
• Create a comfortable environment that includes pleasant space and people
• Allow other people to help you with tasks
The people you allow into your life have a huge impact on how you function. Everyone needs to lean on someone else some of the time, it does not mean we are not self-sufficient, just that we are not afraid to ask for help.
Being around positive thinking, supportive friends and family is imperative if you want to stay sane. Make it a priority to spend some time with your loved ones at least once a week. Schedule it in and stick to the commitment.
Time Management helps you to reduce long-term stress by giving you direction when you have too much work to do. It puts you in control of where you are going, and helps you to increase your productivity. By being efficient in your use of time, you should enjoy your current role more, and should find that you are able to find the time to relax outside work and enjoy life.
We all feel a bit overwhelmed at times. Start your quest for a stress free life by keeping a time journal.
For a week or two record all the things you do on a daily basis and how much time each task requires. Sit with your journal at the end of the two weeks and figure out where you can save time and which tasks you can do without all together.
Prioritize and set realistic, feasible goals. Do not overburden yourself, that’ll just set you up for burnout and failure.
Just remember the sooner you start managing your time effectively, the quicker you’ll be able to bust the stress straight out of your system.